• Jun 22, 2011
Vaughn Gittin Jr's 1969 RTR-X Mustang – Click above for high-res image gallery

Just what is a "world record" drift? That is the question posed by 2010 Formula Drift champion Vaughn Gittin, Jr. and many of his fellow professional drifters, following the announcement by Mercedes-Benz that it had set a new drifting record over this past weekend. According to the German automaker, Mauro Calo drifted a C63 AMG around a skidpad for 7,572 feet, topping Gittin's original record of 6,285 feet set in December of 2008 at the Las Vegas Motor Speedway.

Impressive, but maybe not so much. Is circling a flat skidpad in a continuous loop until one of the tires blows considered drifting? Or, is real drifting a skill that requires a lot more talent?

Guinness World Records defines drifting as, "driving a car with rear slip angle that is greater to the front." Vaughn Gittin, Jr., and fellow Formula Drift competitor Michael Essa, call that a "donut." After watching the C63 circle the concrete pad for more than two minutes, Gittin was unimpressed. "There are about 60 drivers that show up to Formula Drift every month, as well as thousands of grassroots drifters, that can do giant donuts until the tires pop, as well."

It is time for Guinness World Records to recognize the talent behind drifting, not the spectacle of a smoky donut. To put credibility back into the attempt, Gittin suggests redefining the record as, "drifting without intersecting your drift line." This is the way Formula Drift operates, with competitors tossing their vehicles into turns at 100 mph and holding the car sideways throughout a challenging course. Most importantly, adds Gittin, "This result would be a record that took a lot of skill, balls, and wouldn't put you to sleep watching the video of it." We couldn't agree more.


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    • 1 Second Ago
  • 41 Comments
      T. C.
      • 3 Years Ago
      "Drifting" is the automotive equivalent of rhythmic gymnastics. Or figure skating. Take you pick.
      Drift Motion
      • 3 Years Ago
      Well said, that "world record" is so lame...
      hucurreyrry
      • 3 Years Ago
      I agree with him, the "drifting world record" is not all that big of thing to behold. But to set it, celebrate and make a big deal out of it with a promotional video, then whine about how it's not impressive when someone beats his record? Lame. So lame.
      The Box
      • 3 Years Ago
      I think it's about time for someone to drift the Nordschleife.
        sparrk
        • 3 Years Ago
        @The Box
        here you go : http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vyb7RMgcXO0&feature=related
        • 3 Years Ago
        @The Box
        [blocked]
        hucurreyrry
        • 3 Years Ago
        @The Box
        Grounds for getting kicked out, usually.
      • 3 Years Ago
      If you watch the video of Gittin breaking the record he says that he doesn't consider it to be a real drift but that he'd break the record anyways; and he also goes on to say what he considers a drift and that he intends to break that. I agree with him, that's not drifting, just one hell of a donut. My guess is that Gittin is working on setting a record based off of his terms he used to define a drift, at least that's the impression he makes in the video.
      DC
      • 3 Years Ago
      Well, the record is what it is, so he should probably hop back out there and do a 7,572 foot donut.
      • 3 Years Ago
      [blocked]
      AnalogJesse
      • 3 Years Ago
      Perhaps Vaughn Gittin, Jr. should realize how stupid his "sport" is to begin with.
        Griffilicious
        • 3 Years Ago
        @AnalogJesse
        You don't have to like it, but you don't have to attack it either. Drift competitions have a huge and varied audience, so calling it stupid seems a bit ignorant.
      kevsflanagan
      • 3 Years Ago
      The man has a point. Watched the video that Merc posted up and yeah its a giant donut skid pad where is the skill in that? All you'd need to do to top it is have a tire manufacturer produce a set of tires with more rubber for the rears and you beat the record. To me the Merc set the worlds longest car donut.
        Dwight Bynum Jr.
        • 3 Years Ago
        @kevsflanagan
        Um... I take it you didn't see what Vaughn Gittin Jr. did to attain his world record status, huh? He even bashed the previous record holder only to go out and do EXACTLY the same thing... http://www.streetfire.net/video/vaughn-gittin-jr-world-record-drift-attempt_640199.htm
      Aussie Aspie
      • 3 Years Ago
      Was it real drifting? Who knows?! But is drifting a sport for those who can actually drive, or just a pointless exercise for wankers who can't? That's the question! Maintaining traction is a real skill, something these dummkopfs should try sometime...if they can!
        Dixon Ticonderoga
        • 3 Years Ago
        @Aussie Aspie
        Counter-intuitively most drift cars are set up with ridiculously high grip so that they can, in fact, remain in control at those ridiculous angles. Two seconds of research would've told you this, but you seem to have already made up your mind as to the answer to your question.
        Dismortis
        • 3 Years Ago
        @Aussie Aspie
        Keeping a car on the track sideways at 80+mph definately takes skill and when you add in tandem drift runs most drivers are pushed to their limits with this sort of event. To be a truly great drifter you have to already have an understanding of how your cars traction works and then push to the absolute limits of it just before you would go flying off the track.
        Elmo
        • 3 Years Ago
        @Aussie Aspie
        Rhys Millen, a 2-time Formula D champion is currently racing in the clouds at Pikes Peak. Tanner Foust actually held a record for the fastest time in Time Attack history for a while in a Crawford Performance Impreza STI. How about you go film yourself going into a turn at over 100mph and holding a drift through the whole turn? What you wanna bet you can't? I'll put up $50.
      nogo69too
      • 3 Years Ago
      Then I guess he can say his previous record was also unimpressive considering he did the exact same thing.
        david opanga
        • 3 Years Ago
        @nogo69too
        he didnt do a donut he Formula drifted around cones in a circle. he didnt lock the front brakes and spin around endlessly doing donuts which anybody can do with any sense of hooliganism within them!
      blo0dLuSt
      • 3 Years Ago
      i think Vaughn Gittin, Jr. can't accept he is beaten by a FACTORY STOCK c63 amg merc with STOCK TYRES. a record is a record. and its meant to be broken. excuses aside Vaughn, now go and beat that record back! using same set up. STOCK CAR with STOCK TYRES. =) just my 2 cents
        Jonathan Arena
        • 3 Years Ago
        @blo0dLuSt
        Considering how easily he set the record (on his first try), I really REALLY doubt that he's having trouble accepting that it was beat. I'm with Vaughn- going in circles is dumb.
        Jeffrey Smith
        • 3 Years Ago
        @blo0dLuSt
        I think he broke the record in a new stock mustang.
        Elmo
        • 3 Years Ago
        @blo0dLuSt
        Gittin broke the record in a stock 2011 Mustang GT. Research: It's your friend. Next time when you decide to be so sure about something, research. Then you won't look like a total ass like you just did.
          blo0dLuSt
          • 3 Years Ago
          @Elmo
          i'm not talking about the older record he did. i'm talking of the next record and i'm expecting a fair play. i know he did the last record in stock Mustang GT though. now who's that ass?
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